Fantasy Baseball Chat With Jeff Zimmerman

11:02
Jeff Zimmerman: Hi everyone.

11:03
Jeff Zimmerman: Just a heads up, I might have to immediately leave during the chat for a family situation. We should be fine, but it could be a possibility.

11:03
TJ: How many SP, CL, and high skill RP would you take in a 50 player D&H?

11:04
11:05
Michael Waldo: Mountcastle a viable mlb regular?  Jared Walsh?  Thanks much.

11:05
Jeff Zimmerman: Yes for both, but I’m worried some about Walsh getting full time at bats

11:05
Al: Do you know about when ZIPS / The Bat/ etc will be up?

11:06
Jeff Zimmerman: It should be soon. I know Derek is done with The Bat. I think Dan is. Also, there is a ton of background stuff getting done (I’m a bit behind on my tasks) that we hope to roll out soon

11:07
Jefferson: Between gimenez and Rosario in a terrible Cleveland lineup, which one is a better bet for worthwhile production? Does that answer change in a dynasty setting?

11:09
Jeff Zimmerman: I’m high on Gimenez. He was a glove first guy but seems to be getting some power. I noticed his max exit velo is inline with Freddie Freeman and other bats. He could very much produce like the Sox’s Anderson.

11:09
Al Gone Quinn: With shorter and shorter outings, 6 man rotations, etc., it’s more and more difficult to reach the IP limits with 6 healthy and active starters. So where should I cut back at other positions to staff 7th and 8th viable starters? Should I be looking for $5-$10 guys or go on $1 bargain hunts?

11:10
Jeff Zimmerman: Leagues need to cut the innings limit to go with the drop in MLB innings per start. Our AL only dropped it by 200.

11:11
Jeff Zimmerman: I think the $5 range is fine (and might be added for $1 or $2 late in an auction).

11:12
Kate: Any upside with David Peterson?  Or is he just a boring back-end guy?

11:12
Jeff Zimmerman: Back end for now. He’s fine.

11:12
Michael: Thank you for hosting the chat and doing them so regularly.  I’m in a keeper (keep 12 no cost) Points league.  Fairly standard scoring (starting lineup 1 C, 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, 3 OF, 1 UT, 5 SP, 2 RP).  Gonna keep 2B Cavan Biggio, SS Bogaerts, 3B Bregman, SS Gleyber, OF Kyle Tucker, OF Marcel Ozuna, SP Bieber, SP Nola, SP Woodruff, SP Glasnow, and SP Lamet almost all for sure.  It leaves me with one spot for either SP Carrasco, OF Starling Marte, 1B Rhys Hoskins, C Will Smith, SP Ian Anderson, 2B Gavin Lux.  Who you picking?  Or is their someone from my current keeper picks you’d leave out as well and take two?

11:13
Jeff Zimmerman: I pretty sure it’s Marte

11:13
Jeff Zimmerman: I could be talked into Anderson over Lamet

11:14
Jeff Zimmerman: Wait as long as possible on this decision to find out Lamet’s health

11:14
Daisy: Jeff, what’s your take on Framber Valdez’s value? Is he closer to a 2/3 or a 4/5 type arm. He was basically an after thought starter last year until the Verlander injury and then really seemed to take off (albeit with a few hiccup starts) and still has questions about his control and overall pitch mix.

11:14
Jeff Zimmerman: I’m all in but it seems so is everyone else

11:15
Jeff Zimmerman: His groundball-strikeout mix is tough to find

11:15
Kate: Either of Logan Allen or Quantrill of interest in dynasty formats if they grab the rotation spot vacated by Carrasco?  Both look kind of boring on paper, but Cleveland seems to make a lot of otherwise boring arms look pretty good.

11:16
Jeff Zimmerman: Yes on both. I add both and see how they perform. You might need to move on quickly though

11:16
Kate: Do either of Loaisiga or Touki get another start to start?  Or are they both pen arms going fwd?

11:17
Jeff Zimmerman: Loaisiga is interesting but he’s never put it all together.

11:17
Jeff Zimmerman: I’m out on Touki right now

11:18
Al Gone Quinn: Alex Dickerson was a nice OF for me last season in a daily league. As I look at his platoon partner, D. Ruf, I see he was good too. With a big bench (Otto Fgpts), does it make sense to roster both and grab Ruf for $1?

11:19
Jeff Zimmerman: One issue with both is that they do get subbed for each other so sometimes it’s 3 PA’s for Dickerson and 1 for Ruf

11:19
You: Which SP are you avoiding in the early rounds

11:20
Jeff Zimmerman: The pitcher I don’t know how to value is Scherzer. I see him dominate for 200+ innings, or just fall off a cliff. For now, I’m just staying away.

11:20
Jeff Zimmerman: And Snell. I want nothing to do with him in the first 5 rounds

11:20
Jolly Good Show: Statcast rated Bell highly in 2019, yet he utterly bombed in 2020. At the risk of being a small sample size, does this devalue the usefulness of Statcast?

11:22
Jeff Zimmerman: It depends on what StatCast values are used. I find that analysts are a little lazy and just look at the top box. About 80% of the indications are if the guy hits the ball hard.

11:22
Jeff Zimmerman: Bell just put the ball on the ground too much.

11:22
Charley: Should I be concerned about gavin lux in dynasty?

11:23
Jeff Zimmerman: Some. He needs to start dominating. The Dodgers don’t have time for him to “mature” in the majors.

11:23
Guest: Are you drafting Meadows closer to his 2019 stud outfielder performance or his 2020 cruddy platoon bat performance?

11:24
Jeff Zimmerman: In 2020, I was drafting at 2020 cruddy performance and will continue to do so. He was one of my biggest fades coming into the season.

11:24
Charley: I traded Jose altuve for Sixto Sanchez in my dynasty. Thoughts? where is Sixto ceiling? Ace/Frontline starter?

11:25
Jeff Zimmerman: Right now, I think Jose Berrios is a nice comp. Sanchez doesn’t have the elite strikeout rate.

11:25
Peppercorn: In leagues where there is an overall prize, do you think drafters skew to the overall more than they should when is comes to roster construction? Is there an edge perhaps if you draft to win league only?

11:27
Jeff Zimmerman: Not really. I think all the teams are trying to be balanced and usually one team hits on everything and wins. My thought might be to shove in 9 categories, aiming for 2nd place, and try to fill the last category (SB or Saves) off the waiver wire

11:29
Kate: Any history of a guy like Pache (great speed, terrible SB success rates) improving at the ML level?  Or is he just going to be a guy that gets the red light?

11:30
Jeff Zimmerman: I can’t think of any right now. Most eventually get the red light.

11:30
Jonathan: Jake Diekman seems to be the obvious choice for closer in Oakland. How much stock are you putting into his performance in the 21 innings last year? Think he can continue being that reliable closeout guy or will his high walks and .196 BABIP catch up to him?

11:30
Jeff Zimmerman: I think there might be some platoon issues ….

11:31
Jeff Zimmerman: .. and not really.

11:32
Jeff Zimmerman: He’s been good before and for now, he is their best option. Teams will start the season with worse guys than him.

11:33
Kate: Any hope for stalled bats like Kieboom and Brendan Rodgers?  Do they both need a change of scenery?

11:33
Jeff Zimmerman: Rodgers just needs a chance on a last place team … oh wait, that’ll be the Rockies and he still won’t play.

11:34
Jeff Zimmerman: I think the boat has passed on Kieboom. He needs a major revamp.

11:34
Al: Read any good non-baseball related non-fiction lately?

11:35
Jeff Zimmerman: The Biggest Bluff

11:36
Hassan: Any reports on Matthew Boyd? Abysmal 2020 campaign, could never find any momentum. But he did have a few outings towards the end against the Twins and Indians that flashed his upside from 2019.

11:36
Jeff Zimmerman: I haven’t read anything on him to change his value.

11:36
Kate: Obviously a ton of risk with a guy like Arozarena given the small ML sample, but is he maybe not quite as risky as some are making him out to be?  Strong minor league numbers, good tools, good statcast data, projections like him quite a bit.  Is this a situation where you take advantage of others’ apprehension about the small sample (if you can)?

11:38
Jeff Zimmerman: I think pitchers didn’t really have time to adjust and I expect them to come after him with everything to start the season. Then it’ll be his turn to adjust or he could fall off like Aquino did.

11:38
Guest: Where do you think you’d rank Altuve among 2B this year? Thanks!

11:39
Jeff Zimmerman: This is loaded question with different position requirements

11:39
Jeff Zimmerman: In the 8th to 10th round.

11:40
jamie: what is your take on mike yastrzemski? finally seemed to put it together in his age 30 season. do we think he can continue being this high OBP 20 HR 180 RBI/R guy that doesn’t hurt you anywhere or do we think its all too lofty? his peripherals have him overproducing a little. thanks.

11:40
Jeff Zimmerman: I think he’s boringly fine. He’ll go at a discount for that reason.

11:41
Jeff Zimmerman: He’s the reason I don’t draft 28 HR guys with similar skill sets

11:41
Kate: Couple of fringe prospects who get a taste of MLB this year.  Either of Anderson Tejeda or Jared Oliva find themselves in a major role this year?  Interesting tools on both and not much in the way of talent ahead of them.

11:42
Jeff Zimmerman: I loved Tejeda until the Lowe signing. If he’s starting, he needs to be added.

11:43
Jeff Zimmerman: Oliva should get a chance at some point and he’s a must-add at that point for the potential steals.

11:43
Tigers Fan: Who would you rather have Kyle Tucker or Eloy Jimenez this year?

11:43
Jeff Zimmerman: Tucker and it’s not close

11:44
Charley: Thoughts on daulton varsho fantasy value? Is his value mainly bc of the dual catcher/OF eligibility? Should AZ move him perm off C, how valuable is he with just OF?

11:44
Jeff Zimmerman: He’s a top 6 catcher if he plays every day in the OF. His 2022 will then drop

11:44
Guest: Any hype on Shogo Akiyama after his swing change? Would you expect steady playing time ahead?

11:45
Jeff Zimmerman: I like him after the swing change, but his playing time could be a mess

11:45
Curtis: What’s the farthest you remember a player falling a fantasy draft – let’s say anticipated to go in the first three rounds and fell to _________?  Who was the player? (And how did they end up doing that year if you remember)  injuries aside…

11:46
Jeff Zimmerman: Stanton in an auction last year. Before he was hurt, I had him around $18 to $20 and he fell to $7.

11:46
Jeff Zimmerman: I was just getting him up into double digits but got stuck with him

11:47
Al Gone Quinn: Love your twitter feed. Interested in any of these fliers at the end of an auction… Leury Garcia, Mike Brosseau, Willi Castro?

11:47
Jeff Zimmerman: Thanks. Castro only. I’d rather take darts elsewhere

11:48
Christian Colón For Men: I opened the AL SS page, yadda yadda yadda, I’m holding JP Crawford

11:48
Jeff Zimmerman: Cograts … maybe

11:48
Greg: Who are two hitters you’re higher on than 90% of industry? Who are two pitchers you’re higher on than 90% of industry?

11:49
Jeff Zimmerman: Pitchers are Miami’s Lopez and Hernandez (i did the rankings and SP previews for Lindy’s)

11:50
Jeff Zimmerman: Hitter …. tough one. Carlos Santana

11:50
Jeff Zimmerman: McCutchen

11:50
Greg: Cronenworth still draftable in a 12 tm roto?

11:50
Jeff Zimmerman: Not without an NL DH

11:51
Jeff Zimmerman: Maybe late to be dropped if Kim gets most of the playing time.

11:51
You: Do we buy into the changes Votto made to his swing in order to avoid the shift and gain more power? I really don’t want to believe he’s washed yet and the end of last season was convincing

11:51
Jeff Zimmerman: At his current price (free), why not.

11:51
HeyGuysImJim: Our season was paused last year due to COVID.  I have Corbin and Soroka as keepers.  Corbin had a poor year last year and obviously Soroka got badly injured.  What do you think their prospects are for ’21?

11:52
Jeff Zimmerman: No idea until they start throwing in Spring Training

11:52
Tristan: Are you cautious about bouncebacks from guys with significant track records, like E-Rod or Kluber?

11:52
Jeff Zimmerman: I’m not interested in either one until they throw. I think Kluber’s showcase is tomorrow in FL

11:53
Rodney: I’d like to pick two catchers in a 16-team keeper with a $300 budget (that includes annual salary escalators). Who would you keep – Sanchez ($9), Nola ($15), Kirk ($15), Varsho ($9)?

11:53
Jeff Zimmerman: Wow on the prices already. Varsho and …. Nola but I really like Kirk

11:54
Patrick: In 5×5 H2H OBP keeper league where you keep any five players who would you keep?  Matt Olson or Brandon Lowe?

11:54
Jeff Zimmerman: Lowe, Olson clones can be easily acquired.

11:55
kevinthecomic: Does anyone pick up Renato Nunez? I mean, yeah, he’s a one tool guy, but a threat for 30 HR and only 26 yo.  Seems like the kinda player the Brewers sign for one year.

11:56
Jeff Zimmerman: He’ll play, but it could be off the bench. He’ll sign late

11:56
Joe: Seems like a lot of people are operating under the assumption there will be an NL DH, but it really seems unlikely at this point. Do you agree?

11:57
Jeff Zimmerman: The league added it at the last minute last year. I think it’s about 50/50 at this point. I think the players want something more for expanded postseason.

11:57
Bob: Dynasty league–trying to be solid in saves +holds. Have Karinchak; Kimbrel; Will Smith; Colome; Bradley; Bummer. Good enough?

11:57
Jeff Zimmerman: Yes. but keep looking to upgrade.

11:58
kelder23: YOu changing any evaluations based on last year?

11:58
Jeff Zimmerman: The biggest thing would be from changes in a pitcher (e.g. Zac(h)(k) Plesac).

11:59
Alvin: Hey, Jeff — I’m in a pretty competitive league filled mostly with guys who work in baseball, my roster isn’t very good, and I’m getting the sense that other owners just know the sport better than I do and are better able to manipulate the league’s parameters to put together winning teams. I like playing, but it’s taking too much of my time and I need someone to tell me to drop out. What do you say?

12:00
Jeff Zimmerman: If it’s not fun, drop it. I quit half my leagues a couple years ago when I moved away from daily lineups.

12:00
Jeff Zimmerman: It’s supposed to be fun

12:00
Guest: A.L., auction keeper, H2H…is Rowdy a $10 keeper?

12:00
Jeff Zimmerman: Yes

12:00
Deathclaw: If you go safe floor early with your pitching who do you like more as an upside mid round guy – Nate Pearson or Mitch Keller?

12:00
Jeff Zimmerman: Keller

12:01
Jeff Zimmerman: That’s it for today. I need to head out and will be around next week.





Jeff, one of the authors of the fantasy baseball guide,The Process, writes for RotoGraphs, The Hardball Times, Rotowire, Baseball America, and BaseballHQ. He has been nominated for two SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis and won it in 2013 in tandem with Bill Petti. He has won three FSWA Awards including on for his MASH series. In his first two seasons in Tout Wars, he's won the H2H league and mixed auction league. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.

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Dennis Geisleman

Sorry Jeff, but who do I contact to stop ads (I am a supporter/member @$50 annually. Thanks.